Wanaka - what a difference an "a" makes.

Trip Start Oct 01, 2008
Trip End Nov 16, 2008

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Flag of New Zealand  , South Island,
Tuesday, November 4, 2008

After Penguins we progressed to Wanaka and had a little panic that we couldn't remember where we were staying. A little detective work and we worked it out. Wanaka is a pretty small town (pop. 4000) but there are about 5 places called lakeside or lakeview or whatever. Anyway we were in Lakeview Motel on Lismore St. (Nice, great view and pretty cheap too). First thing the next day we went to the iSite and I booked a skydive, the weather forecast was pretty dismal but we went out to the airport, by the time we got there they had decided that it was a no-go, but things might be better in the afternoon, so we bunked off to Puzzleworld.

Stuart Landsborough's Puzzling World in fact, it has a 3d maze and loads of wierd optical illusion stuff. First off we tried to do some puzzles in the cafe, and I got very confused by some wooden bricks, this old lady eventually came over to help me out.. then into the maze, we managed to complete in just about the expected time - 30 minutes, its a bit harder than Hampton Court. Then we went through the illusion rooms, which was quite amusing, but left me feeling pretty nauseous after the leaning room.

A call back to the Airport confirmed our suspicions, the weather was no better, maybe tomorrow.

So we returned to Wanaka and decided to chance the weather and walk along the lakeside round to Rippon Valley Winery, a vineyard owned by Sam "Jurassin Park" Niell. We got a bit blown about, but made it and sampled a few of the wines, leaving with a bottle of Jeuneuse Reisling, hurrah. The weather got mor boisterous on the way back, but we stopped to read some of the exciting historical dates on the Wanaka Millenium Walkway (2000 paving stones, 1 per year, most of which have a what-happened in this year on them) very educational. And then to Cinema Paradiso to watch "Taken!". "Liam Niesson at his explosive best" and "The best action movie since Bourne" said the poster. "Pile of toss" say I. The cinema is super cool, however. Lots of sofas and a morris minor you can sit in, they have an intermission so you can recharge your glasses or get pizza.

The next day it was snowing... needless to say the skydive was cancelled and we set our sails for Queenstown against the driving snow.
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